Java - 'Change Of Heart'

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Java - 'Change Of Heart'

'Change Of Heart' is thirty years old now but it still sounds as fresh as if it came out last week ... good music will always win out in the end.

Java started off as a covers band in 1987 but they were soon writing their own material which wasn't what the clubs back then wanted. Founder members Rosella Santoro (vocals/keyboards) and partner Rob Deegan (bass) then set about looking for like-minded musicians to make their AOR dreams come true; enter Darran Bridge (drums) and Martin Latham (guitar). Java soon became firm favourites on the London Rock scene, playing many live dates and filming a video for their song 'Helpless' which would also end up on the 'Kerrang!' album sampler 'Powercuts'.

Not long after this, they entered the studio in the summer of 1987 � with Guy Bidmead (Mot�rhead, Whitesnake etc.) at the production helm � to start work on their debut album. Unfortunately, even with this strong record in the can to shop around to the labels of the day, nothing happened and that elusive record deal never arrived. They soldiered on for a while, with Santoro and Deegan especially keeping positive about things, but eventually, the band split up.



However, do not despair lovers of obscure eighties AOR, for those very nice people over at Escape have once again worked their magic and here, in all its re-mastered glory, is the Java album. As soon as I played it, this release took me straight back to those early days of 'Boulevard Magazine' where we were all on the lookout for acts such as this, ones that would help tickle our AOR funny bones. What you have here is a very fine example of Female-Fronted Melodic Rock, full of great songs and, for that time, some quite wonderful musicianship. Just lend an ear to 'Helpless', 'Forever And Ever', the Punky 'Mama's Boy', 'You Really Do Know' (with its superb guitar solo) and the big ballad 'For Those That Love You Still' and wonder to yourself just why this lot didn't get anywhere when some acts with half the talent went all the way (another one of music's great mysteries).

Collectors of AOR/Melodic Rock that haven't got a tape of this in their collections will be grinning from ear to ear at its release, and fans of those genres could do a lot worse than to get a copy for themselves. 'Change Of Heart' is thirty years old now but it still sounds as fresh as if it came out last week � good music will always win out in the end.

Ian Johnson

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